There must be a plan. Surely?


By Chris Pritchett

It would, of course, be unheard of for this government to take a swift course of action without any clue what comes next, but it hasn't really challenged the form guide here.  Whilst the industry and its commentators are becoming comfortable with the need for the renewables sector to transition away from subsidy as it matures, it seems bizarre to imagine a scenario in which small scale solar installations are providing power to the grid but not being paid for it. 

That is, however, the situation as it stands. I suspect this is more about timing and bandwith, but the move to cull the export tariff without anything to replace it has been made with unseemly haste, and this can only be a Treasury-driven matter. 

In light of the Industrial Strategy and BEIS' undoubted interest (if falling a little short of full-blown commitment) to the decentralised energy revolution, it seems unlikely that a key pillar would be simply knocked over.  If it is, the Government may soon realise that there is a swell of opinion that says people would rather see solar panels on new houses, schools and community buildings than save £1.86 per year on their energy bills.   

Surely a proposal will come.  I reckon it's the will of the people.

The export tariff will close to new applicants at the same time as the generation tariff, the government has confirmed, despite overwhelming opposition to the plans. The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy confirmed in a response to this summer’s consultation today, claiming a fixed and flat-rate export tariff does “not align with the wider government objectives” of a move toward market-based solutions. The feed-in tariff scheme will therefore now close in full to new applicants from 31 March 2019. However, the government has noted responses to the consultation which stressed the need for a route to market for small-scale generators after the expiration of the scheme, and has committed to report on specific proposals for such arrangements “in due course”.
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